Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 28

Thread: Help preparing a rough sawn Ash board

  1. #1

    Help preparing a rough sawn Ash board

    Hello,

    I'm a beginner woodworker and I've started a personal project to building a live edge coffee table. As a trial run and to learn technique, I got a rough sawn Ash slab, approx 3" x 24" x 60".

    I want to use hand tools for the slab preparation. I got a few vintage no. 4 and no. 5 hand planes for this project.

    I converted a no. 4 plane into a scrub plane and started to clean up the slab.

    As you can see in the picture, there is a large knot in the middle of the slab. As I try to clean it up I get deep tears.

    My questions are:

    Which plane is better for scrubbing, the no. 4 or no. 5?

    How to avoid tearing or minimize it?

    Thank you,
    Rafael
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Lancaster, Ohio
    Posts
    86
    Don't know the answer.
    Just want to say GOOD LUCK
    Looking good so far, enjoy yourself as you go and keep posting pictures

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Toronto Ontario
    Posts
    9,568
    Try a low angle plane or a card scraper...............Regards, Rod.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafael Herrera View Post
    Hello,

    I'm a beginner woodworker and I've started a personal project to building a live edge coffee table. As a trial run and to learn technique, I got a rough sawn Ash slab, approx 3" x 24" x 60".

    I want to use hand tools for the slab preparation. I got a few vintage no. 4 and no. 5 hand planes for this project.

    I converted a no. 4 plane into a scrub plane and started to clean up the slab.

    As you can see in the picture, there is a large knot in the middle of the slab. As I try to clean it up I get deep tears.

    My questions are:

    Which plane is better for scrubbing, the no. 4 or no. 5?

    How to avoid tearing or minimize it?
    I use an "actual" scrub plane, but your modified #4 should be sufficient. Scrub planes are purposely rather light, because the weight of the plane is the last thing you need in this somewhat aerobic work.

    Re the tearout around the knot, a smaller plane like a #3 would be helpful, tuned super sharp, and proceeding with care. You might also consider filler, once you've otherwise got the surface how you like it. (But that's another subject.)
    Last edited by Doug Dawson; 11-18-2019 at 2:22 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Longview WA
    Posts
    20,047
    Blog Entries
    1
    Rafael, your #5 looks to the length of a #7 if your panel is close to 24" wide.

    Working around a knot is one of the trickiest parts of a board to tame. Sometimes with a small plane like a #3 or #4 it can be worked from the knot outward. Often it needs to be followed with scraping or sanding.

    Knots tend to be very hard parts of "end grain like" wood that chips easily.

    Good luck,

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  6. #6
    Once you get your board somewhat flat you can use set the cap iron close to eliminate any tearout, One of the irons will have more camber, and the other will need a barely noticeable camber.
    A four and a five has the same width irons so you can swap them over if you deem one plane more suitable than the other.
    You might just choose to use the 5 for the extra length for both jobs.
    I like the no.5 1/2 for nearly everything, but have a four for short stuff, and the fact its a bit handier to set the narrower iron even closer to the edge.
    Make sure the frog in the plane is back all the way.
    Look up David Weaver, (David W) on youtube, for knowledgeable and correct information on setting your cap iron.
    The cap iron need to be this close, about a 64'th" away from the edge to start with, and if it needs to be closer then I use the no.4 with half that much camber again.
    You probably won't need to go closer than below for the job though.



    Tom

  7. #7
    Jim, yes, that's a no. 7 in the picture. I did most of the work w the 4 and 5.

  8. #8
    Tom,
    I found the videos by David W some time ago and found them very informative, he also turned me on to Arkansas stones. He seems to have stopped posting though. Since I worked on the plank I've acquired no. 3 and 5 1/2 planes. I'll give them a try working the knot from the inside out and a small blade exposure.

    Rafael

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafael Herrera View Post
    Tom,
    I found the videos by David W some time ago and found them very informative, he also turned me on to Arkansas stones. He seems to have stopped posting though. Since I worked on the plank I've acquired no. 3 and 5 1/2 planes. I'll give them a try working the knot from the inside out and a small blade exposure.

    Rafael
    Rafael
    You won't need to bother doing that with the knots, just plane as you would normally.
    You need a somewhat flat enough surface to have an even thickness shaving to progressively take it down with the rest of the material.
    If the knot is now higher or lower than the surrounding wood, then that means the shaving will be thicker and the plane will not work as it should.
    If the knot is hollow then you will need a deeper cut to get it to cut which will stall the plane.
    If the knot is a lump then that means its a heavier cut on the plane which won't be nice either.
    But a plane that is taking full width unbroken shavings can plane that no bother with disregard for grain direction and give a flawless surface.
    Tom
    Last edited by Tom Trees; 11-18-2019 at 4:12 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    twomiles from the "peak of Ohio
    Posts
    8,053
    Been doing a lot of work with Ash...all rough sawn.

    IF needed, I have a #5 with a 8" radius camber iron...

    I also have a #5-1/2", and a #5-1/4, and a "normal" jack #5 ( with a very slight camber)...
    DVD Door, flattening.JPG
    This is the 5-1/2. While I am going with the grain, plane travels along skewed like this.....as I am more interested in how flat the board is, than what the shavings look like. Panel was a glue up..3/4 x 10" x 21" for a door panel.

    So, even with the longer planes, I go at a diagonal to the grain, might even use a low angle for scrub work...
    DVD Door, WR 62 flattening.JPG
    But, never with the grain, as this plane is a tear out machine.
    DVD Door panel, glue up 2.JPG
    Which I don't need when doing a panel like this....

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Trees View Post
    Rafael
    You won't need to bother doing that with the knots, just plane as you would normally.
    You need a somewhat flat enough surface to have an even thickness shaving to progressively take it down with the rest of the material.
    If the knot is now higher or lower than the surrounding wood, then that means the shaving will be thicker and the plane will not work as it should.
    If the knot is hollow then you will need a deeper cut to get it to cut which will stall the plane.
    If the knot is a lump then that means its a heavier cut on the plane which won't be nice either.
    But a plane that is taking full width unbroken shavings can plane that no bother with disregard for grain direction and give a flawless surface.
    There's often a grain reversal in the immediate vicinity of a knot, so I don't know how you would plane directly over it "through and through" without significant tearout (why does this idiot spell checker keep trying to change it to tarot, maybe it knows something I don't.)

    One thing that sometimes works is to use a hand-held power planer with a very fine set to mill down around and over the knot. It will leave small witness marks, but they're going to be far enough away from the knot that you can handle them with a #3 or a scraper. Particularly useful technique if the knot is at a significant elevation w.r.t. the final surface height of the board.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Dawson View Post
    There's often a grain reversal in the immediate vicinity of a knot, so I don't know how you would plane directly over it "through and through" without significant tearout
    There is no tearout if you set the cap iron close, you will never need consider the grain direction again when planing anything but scrub work.
    No need for scraping ever.
    If you have deep tearout from planing with the cap iron not close enough, this means a whole lot of needless work to scrape down to,

  13. #13
    About all you can do with a plane is set to cut very light and run the plane in a diagonal direction so it's more slicing the knot than a direct cut. If it were me I would sneak in a belt sander when nobody was looking.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Trees View Post
    There is no tearout if you set the cap iron close, you will never need consider the grain direction again when planing anything but scrub work.
    No need for scraping ever.
    If you have deep tearout from planing with the cap iron not close enough, this means a whole lot of needless work to scrape down to,
    So you're saying that you can plane against the grain, often aggressively opposing grain, and experience no tearout, just by setting the cap iron close. Kind of like walking on water? I'll have to try that.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Dawson View Post
    So you're saying that you can plane against the grain, often aggressively opposing grain, and experience no tearout, just by setting the cap iron close. Kind of like walking on water? I'll have to try that.
    Absolutely Doug
    It is indeed a silver bullet.
    I have to use the close set cap iron for iroko as at least a third of the stuff I come across has alternating grain/grain reversal and bandings.
    Before I started using the close set cap iron, I bought a no.3 and set the frog with the tightest mouth I could set get with the hope I could plane alternating
    bandings with the grain, and bought a Stanley no.80 scraper plane for the transitioning areas.
    It was a horrible using a scraper that went blunt after a few passes to get down to the tearout.
    It was in the height of the summer and I ended up getting a reaction to the dust of the iroko
    and had to stop for a bit.
    Now I can plane away and not have ill effects as there's less dust being made making continuous unbroken shavings over knots and such,
    and I'm not slogging it out and sweating the dust into me anymore.
    Warren Mickley was one of the driving forces that ultimately led me reading David Weaver's knowledge on the subject.
    So I have both those guys to thank.
    Tom

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •